*This is a follow up post in a series about pre/postnatal exercise. To learn more about my previous post on exercising in the first trimester follow this link. As always, consult your OB or Midwife before beginning any exercise program.*
You've made it to the second trimester of pregnancy, congrats! Your second trimester lasts from weeks 13-27 of your pregnancy. During this trimester you will hit the halfway mark of pregnancy, so you're well on your way to meeting your baby!
Why Exercise During the Second Trimester
Whether you are continuing exercise, or just starting out, the second trimester is a fantastic time to workout, here's why:
Feeling Your Best
During the second trimester a lot of women feel their best. Morning sickness has usually either calmed down, or completely disappeared(unless you are one of the few lucky ones to experience it all nine months!), so the second trimester is when many women feel the best out of all three trimesters. You might also be experiencing more energy, since the fatigue of the first trimester often wears off at this point.
You Aren't Carrying Around All the Extra Weight...Yet
You may have been gaining some weight, but you haven't reached the third trimester, when you will be carrying the most weight from your baby, the placenta, and the increased blood volume needed to sustain you and your baby as they grow. Following a regular exercise routine during the second trimester will mean an easier transition into the third trimester!
Exercising is Good For Baby
Did you know women who exercise during pregnancy tend to have bigger, redder placentas? Exercising increases blood flow, and helps nutrients to transfer from mother to baby more efficiently. This results in a better functioning placenta, which means baby is getting what she needs. Staying healthy is good for you, and good for your baby!
Special Considerations For Exercising During the Second Trimester
Testing For Gestational Diabetes
During the Second Trimester, your provider will most likely have you take a test to see if you have gestational diabetes. Make sure that you plan ahead so you aren't testing around the same time or day as when you will be exercising. If you are fasting to take the test, or eating abnormally, you will be at risk of becoming lightheaded or sick when working out. With a little planning ahead, you can fit in the test, and still follow a regular exercise routine.
Callie Corless is a Birth Doula and Prenatal Fitness Instructor in the Dallas - Fort Worth Area.